June 02, 2021 By C! Magazine Staff Words and photos by Maki Aganon

DGR 2021: Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride to Fight Anxiety

One of the main advocacies of DGR, or Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride, is suicide prevention. 2021 marks Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride, a Decade of Riding Dapper for men’s physical and mental health.

Over 500,000 men die from suicide every year, amplified by the pandemic, economic problems and livelihood on the Philippines, to be there for each other is certified urgent in the name of motorcycle brotherhood. As anxiety creeps in, there is a lot of uncertainty, the pandemic has brought upon everyone.

Since 2014, thousands of classic and vintage riders have joined DGR and keep exponential growth with each and every successive year. The first ‘DGR’ was a mock up named “Magigiting na Ginoo’, with current DGR volunteer organizer Mark Laccay, who started a handful of gentlemen, paraded around Metro Manila, spreading an advocacy, up until the grant in Manila was awarded by the DGR HQ. Today, DGR Philippines is composed of volunteers and freelance professionals who share their work to strengthen the community and unite riders in the Philippines and continue to operate as a non-profit advocacy organization for the love of classic and vintage motorcycles.

From the usual long parade, Manila opted to adapt the ‘Ride Solo Together’ in compliance to social distancing protocols and minimum protective health standards. In continuation, riders take part through an online culmination activity and contest led by Philippine presenter, Triumph Motorcycle Philippines to award stand out participants by means of prizes from sponsors.

We took part in this tweaked activity, thanks to Yamaha Motor Philippines for letting us try the Yamaha Bolt-R Spec. A bike that pumps a lot of grunty torque, that isn’t snatchy in the low rev ranges, and totally enveloped into a modern-cruiser character. The bike was certainly handy for DGR, despite numerous pit stops, narrowing streets and open roads, with low seat height, comfortable buckskin seats and really soft clutch mechanism.

This year’s set up, riders are tasked to visit at least 4 pit stops from 7am -12nn, take a selfie, and tag the place post on social media. Over 20 pitstops of participating establishments welcome riders with refreshments, coffee and various freebies to make it really exciting.

While this year’s DGR is special and constrained, DGR HQ was still able to commend Manila as one of the biggest content contributors of the advocacy worldwide. DGR is also participated by different key cities all over the Philippines – Cebu, Laguna, Batangas, Davao, Rizal, just to mention a few.

DGR has always been one of the catalysts for the growth of Sport Heritage, Classic and Vintage-inspired motorcycles where manufacturers took notice and created products to support the market segment. It also reflects the Philipine market and these types of motorcycles are well received for being nostalgic in nature, with modern features.  

During the culmination activity, ‘Kuya’ Kim Atienza, who wasn’t able to participate this year, still led the traditional opening prayer for everyone. Jay Taruc who was streaming from home; reminisce the old times where Ride PH Moto Heritage Weekend used to house DGR post-parade.

Times have changed, but the people remain the same. Being there for each other is the least we can do to get through.

GLOBAL PARTNERS

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El Poco Cantina

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